Monday, July 9, 2012

Weekend and Engage 2020 1

Wow, Engage 2020. Ok.

First, the schedule.
Saturday we were back at Engage, Bethel Brentwood, at 9am. The first session went from
9am until 12:30pm. Then we broke for lunch. Then we had workshops from 2pm to 4pm. Then we had a great for dinner and then we had a final sessions from 7pm to 11pm (supposed to be 9pm).

So the morning session.
God moved mightily in that time.
Pastor Brock Lillis spoke, but I feel like it is more acurate to say that God spoke through Pastor Brock. It was amazing.

First off - I met Brock 4 years ago when he came to speak at our school. He spoke on "preaching the gospel in love". Morgan and I left class afterwards and discovered that our car wouldn't start. As we were trying to figure out how to start it Brock and his wife pulled up. Brock saw our predicament and immediately came over to help jump our car. He sorted it all out and had us ready to go. When we thanked him for helping us he looked at us very genuinely and said "of course, i just preached to you about doing things in love, what sort of christian would I be if I didn't help?". I love his honesty and integrity. 
Second, Brock started by telling his story. He was a partying football playing college student. He transfered colleges in his third year of university. He expected more partying. When he walked into the locker room the first day, two black guys walked up to him and said "you're Brock, right? We've been praying for you". This was not what Brock, white football player from the south expected. He was expecting the details of a party or where to club. The two guys (Delvin and someone else who's name I forget) kept reaching out to him.

A while later Brock decided to try church and went to Delvin's church. He met God and from there has been telling people about him ever since. With the two guys they went to their football teammates and saw 9 of them saved in the first month. And now, years later he's back at the same campus at MTSU in Murfreesboro pastoring a church with Delvin! When I met Pastor Brock he was at the Clarksville church, but has since gone back to Murfreesboro to help our struggling church there. They are seeing growth. When Paul and I visited last week we loved how genuine the worship was and how truly friendly the people were. 

Anyways....Brock spoke. 
He talked about how if we say the church is all about Jesus, then we should be about all that he's about. And Jesus is all about seeking and saving the lost. He said that true worship is bowing at his feet and becoming about what he is about. Worship ties in with mission. We must have a revolutionary heart for people. 
He used the story of Jesus and Lazarus (John 11) to show how Jesus did evangelism. For those that haven't heard it, this is a story about Jesus and his friend Lazarus. Unfortunately though, the story starts off with Lazarus having died. Jesus goes to see his friend, he cares for him, he prays for him and then he goes and calls him and Lazarus is raised from the dead. Miracle!

He talked about how Jesus showed three qualities:
1. He showed compassion. 
He cared about Lazarus. He was troubled with love. If we are driven by love then we will never burn out. We can't run out of God's love. 
2. He went / Build bridges, not walls. 
Jesus went to the tomb. He went to where Lazarus was. If you're going to tell people about Jesus you can't expect they'll just show up at your house or church meeting. 
3. He prayed / Cried out to God. 
Jesus shows us to pray while on the mission. He used prayer as part of the process and not a wall. Pray where you're wanting to meet people. 
4. He spoke / He called out to Lazarus. 
At some point, after we love, build relationship and pray we must also say something. At some point we must speak truth and call people forward. 

Fall out.
I was so convicted. It wasn't that Brock was saying anything I hadn't heard before, but God was stirring in my heart. I felt so moved. I want to go out from here in his grace, power and obedience. Making a commitment to God, I repented for where I know I have shied away and get to chose to speak truth in His power. I have marked this moment. I am excited to see what it looks like to walk this out in God's life giving power. 

Pastor James Lowe
Well after Pastor Brock spoke we had a brief break and then headed back in for another hour with Pastor James Lowe. James is the pastor from Bethel Brentwood. James is a large (football player sized) African-American man. He preaches in power, humor and faith. He is one of the funniest preachers I have ever heard - he tells stories of ending up in the ghetto with drug dealers and murderers and the escapades that have happened there that have you howling with laughter and yet, also turning towards God. It's fairly amazing. 

His message reiterated much of what Brock had spoken about but his humor, amazing story telling style and complete willingness to look like a fool for God was disarming and gave us an opportunity to feel energized and excited. I was so thankful for his honesty, giftings and huge faith. 

This is a man that isn't afraid to be all who he is called to be - emotionally, ethnically and strength wise. He prays purposefully with much of his time, and also acts. He works out to maintain physical and his spiritual strength. He came to our class a couple weeks ago and he spoke on prayer and relational intimacy with Christ. His belief in the importance of connection with God as the mainstay for strength is amazing. To hear a 300 pound, mountain of a mound, share that all of his strength comes from Christ is convicting, to say the least. When he was with us in class, he prophesied over some of our classmates and will be coming back again next week to do more of the same and I can't wait!
And with that I'll leave this to close until tomorrow - because there is much more to come!

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